Speaking to journalist Dmitry Kiselyov, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov explained that Russia wants to get back on a sound footing in its relationship with the US.
“If it only depended on us, we would return to normal relations,” Lavrov explained, noting that the first step would be to cancel the expulsions of Russian diplomats from Washington, and US diplomats from Moscow.
“We offered this to President Biden’s Administration as soon as he took all the necessary oaths and assumed power,” he continued. “I mentioned this to Secretary of State [Antony] Blinken.”
According to Lavrov, the crisis began when former President Barack Obama took measures against Russia prior to his leaving office. After the election of Donald Trump, Moscow remained patient and waited for the new administration to reverse the “excesses” of the outgoing president, but it never happened.
“I very much hope that Washington, as we do, recognizes their responsibility for stability in the world,” Lavrov continued. “There are not only problems between Russia and the US that complicate the lives of our citizens… but also disagreements that put international security at serious risk, in the broadest sense of the word.”
In recent weeks, relations between Moscow and Washington have become even more strained.
On April 15, Biden signed an executive order imposing further sanctions against Russia. Targeting more than 30 individuals and organizations, the measures are said to be punishment for alleged interference in the US presidential election, as well as the infamous SolarWinds cyber-espionage case, which Washington says was ordered by the Russian government. Biden also announced the expulsion of 10 people from the Russian diplomatic mission.
In response, Moscow sent 10 US diplomats back home.
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